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st64 Apr 2014
Spring comes little, a little. All April it rains.
The new leaves stick in their fists; new ferns still fiddleheads.
But one day the swifts are back. Face to the sun like a child
You shout, 'The swifts are back!'

Sure enough, bolt nocks bow to carry one sky-scyther
Two hundred miles an hour across fullblown windfields.
Swereee swereee. Another. And another.
It's the cut air falling in shrieks on our chimneys and roofs.

The next day, a fleet of high crosses cruises in ether.
These are the air pilgrims, pilots of air rivers.
But a shift of wing, and they're earth-skimmers, daggers
Skilful in guiding the throw of themselves away from themselves.

Quick flutter, a scimitar upsweep, out of danger of touch, for
Earth is forbidden to them, water's forbidden to them,
All air and fire, little owlish ascetics, they outfly storms,
They rush to the pillars of altitude, the thermal fountains.

Here is a legend of swifts, a parable —
When the Great Raven bent over earth to create the birds,
The swifts were ungrateful. They were small muddy things
Like shoes, with long legs and short wings,

So they took themselves off to the mountains to sulk.
And they stayed there. 'Well,' said the Raven, after years of this,
'I will give you the sky. You can have the whole sky
On condition that you give up rest.'

'Yes, yes,' screamed the swifts, 'We abhor rest.
We detest the filth of growth, the sweat of sleep,
Soft nests in the wet fields, slimehold of worms.
Let us be free, be air!'

So the Raven took their legs and bound them into their bodies.
He bent their wings like boomerangs, honed them like knives.
He streamlined their feathers and stripped them of velvet.
Then he released them, Never to Return

Inscribed on their feet and wings. And so
We have swifts, though in reality, not parables but
Bolts in the world's need: swift
Swifts, not in punishment, not in ecstasy, simply

Sleepers over oceans in the mill of the world's breathing.
The grace to say they live in another firmament.
A way to say the miracle will not occur,
And watch the miracle.
Anne Stevenson (b. 1933)

Born in Cambridge, England, Anne Stevenson moved between the United States and the United Kingdom numerous times during the first half of her life.
While she considers herself an American, Stevenson qualifies her status: “I belong to an America which no longer really exists.”
Since 1962 she has lived mainly in the U.K., including Cambridge, Scotland, Oxford, and, most recently, North Wales and Durham.

Intersections and borders are common emblems in Stevenson’s work, though the land on which they are drawn is often mutable or shrouded in mist.
She is as comfortable in strict form as she is in free verse, and her poetry, according to poet George Szirtes, is “humane, intelligent and sane, composed of both natural and rational elements, and amply furnished with patches of wit and fury.”

Initially a student of music, Stevenson earned her undergraduate and master’s degrees at the University of Michigan, where she studied with Donald Hall, who encouraged her to pursue poetry.
Resistant to connections with any particular school of contemporary poetry, Stevenson has honed her art apart from many of her peers but within the larger conversation of the form.
As she says, “If I couldn’t overhear the rhythms and sounds established by the long, varied tradition of English poetry—say by Donne, Blake, Keats, Dickinson, Whitman, Frost—I would not be able to hear what I myself have to say. Poems that arise only from a shallow layer of adulterated, contemporary language are rootless. They taste to me like the mass-produced vegetables grown in chemicals for supermarkets.”

Stevenson slowly lost her hearing years ago, though her poetry continues to come first from sound.
In a 2007 essay, Stevenson wrote, “Although I rarely write in set forms now, poems still come to me as tunes in the head. Words fall into rhythms before they make sense. It often happens that I discover what a poem is about through a process of listening to what its rhythms are telling me.”

“Ever since I can remember, I have been aware of living at what E.M. Forster called ‘a slight angle’ to the universe,” she says.
“I have always had to create my own angular environment or perish. But that’s the whole point about borders. It’s the best place from which to be able to see both sides.”
Sean Pope Oct 2012
With crooked cap and crooked smile
The archer nocks an arrow.
His target breathing easily -
For now, if not for long -
It stands completely unaware.

The ****** goes unnoticed.

With beating wings and tampered breath
He sights the arrow on his prey.
His wrist like granite draws the bow,
His seasoned eyes drawn to a heart.
A life beats, still unburdened,
While its rival flutters strong.

Two wills at match; with great respect
The archer takes his aim.

Now solemn, breath a distant curse -
How stones have shown more tremor! -
The moment falls, the bow held taut.

There is no going back.




The arrow finds its mark.
The Mellon Sep 2016
I love you

A little boy sits in his third grade classroom
He wonders why he hasn't any friends
He asks his mom
Why do they look at me like I am different
Why am I so alone

I love you

A few years later on the soccer field
A boy from the other team nocks him over
Instead of anyone helping him up
They all laugh
Even his own team.
He asks his coach the next day
Why no one helped him
Instead his coach walked away

I love you

Finnaly he graduates high school
Everyone around him is hugging and celebrating
Except the three foot radius between him and the nearest person at any time

Before he could leave though a girl walked up and hugged him
When she let go three years had gone by and she was in a beautiful white dress and the boy now a man smiled

I love you

The boy loved his wife
Every morning he called her beautiful
Every night he kissed her forhead before sleep
Even the day he got the call that his mother had unexpectedly passed away

I love you

The boy missed his mother
He he looked for her in the clouds
In the Bible
In the bottom of every bottle

I love you

Along came a day when his wife told him to stop looking and read
Three hours later she was packed and the divorce papers were signed

I love you

He cried that night
He missed his mother
He missed his wife
He looked to the sky and cried
Why am I alone
Please don't let this happen to me

I love you

That's all he heard
When he woke up he realized he was not alone
He had God to lead his life

You see when the boy asked his mother

Something special happened
That night he dreamed a life without

He soon learned God was always saying to him

I love you

He realized real friends aren't had
They are made threw life long experience

God placed the boy at a crossroads between

Anything less

The boy now knew he simple had to chose love

He knew he could because
He was loved

I love you
It's worth mentioning that thisbis not based on true events, though there is probably someone who has lived this life. As far as the poem goes, I just kinda wrote it. Not sure where it came from. Maybe it will mean something more to one of you than it does me right now. Mayne I'll need it in a few years. Thanks for reading.
Dug deep I digged this dirt and dragged down dark dermal tissue,
Diamonds in the rough.
Picked and plucked I perused polished pieces of painful porcelain, piercing pockets in my peripheral parts, precious pearls and petals I peeked and pounced.

Bleeding black blood from bored brackets in body's bursting bark,
I grasped golden, gleaming glory. Gazing greedily like I'd gotten God by his good gourd,
I let needles nick nocks into niche nooks and night nothings knap nooses around my neck, my needle in the haystack.

My night, my might, my one of a kind,
My Kim.
RhiannonMystique Jul 2015
Words said
Glass broken
Words whispered
Words written
Black and blue
Blood runs
Tears fall
Nocks loud
Screaming an crying
Roses thrown in a whole
Crosses where worn the day he left me ...
Blood spilled
Ghost tracks down her back
tears fall on a old picture
Curses yelled
an blood ran again

( this was in tribute to my beloved  best friend Ash ..he is gone one day i hope to see him again )
Simone13 Aug 2019
People take it for granted
And just assume that everyone has it
To feel themselves be captured
By something they won't admit

To feel the pain
That consuming torture
To have that warm beat in your chest
Spreading like wildfire

To feel what
I want to feel

Not when the music starts
Or when a novel ends
I want that constant suffocating feeling
That gives my life meaning
I want to be whole and broken

I want what words can’t explain
Or letters can't decode
I want to be  torn apart
And sowed back together
I want to feel my stomach drop
when life nocks me down
I want to feel my vocals rip
When i cry

I want to feel
Like something to someone
I want the emotion of knowing
I ment something
I felt something

To feel the raw emotions
Of being human
Not this numbness

Not the dread of the sunrise
knowing It will be gone
James M Vines Apr 2017
Born into reality and not prosperity, I grappled with the circumstances that surrounded me. Disadvantage was my native tongue and necessity was my teacher in the school of hard nocks. I earned my diploma at a young age and became street wise. Survival was the only way of life I knew, until I was older and had earned many battle scars. Now I am not sure if I am better or worse for what I had to go through. I only know that I wasn't born with a silver spoon and the only way that I will ever grab a brass ring is to likely steal one.
(conceived while in utero
which loosely summarization in toto
of this ordinary Joe Schmoe,
who did wade nine months for a roe
at mercy of obstetricians status quo,

giving me a jump start to blend pro
pen city utilizing both a very small oboe,
and comination cross bow
either plucking or shooting from off
     umbilical cord mocks nocks notched arrow.
Biological copulation draws, etches, fashions
genesis hewing, inscribing jeweled kismet,
legislating miraculous novitiate officiating
poignant outcome quintessential reproduction
seminarians theological universal vocalization

whittling ** xy yearning zealously, zestfully
aggregating begotten cell diminutive elementary
fecund gametes glommed gooey honied
insulated joined kindled live miniscule netizen
outlook plenti qualified readied simulacrum

thrumming undifferentiated voiceless wisp,
xpert yin/yang zygote (adroit bitcoin currency)
describing extemporaneous fusion generates
hormonal influx juices kickstarting life

manifold natural occurrence pregnancy
quilts rudimentary secrete tapestry until vicar
wizard yields zealous adorable biological
concatenation, derivative extrapolated

filigreed ****** helped induce jointly
knotted linkedin minecraft nascent
ovulation presaging quintessential
reproduction, sharing trimesters, umbilical
venerated womb yearning Zen.

Amazing baby, credit deoxyribonucleic
acid, enigma fantastically grand husband
injected jetted klatch, leaving microscopic
nothings, opportunistically pierced quarters,
readied shutterfly trap, ****** vibrantly
welded x2c yoked Zappa.

A bun cooks definitive enchilada, formula
generations hardy induce jimmied kin,
labored maternal newborn, one pricked
queue, randiness spurred ****** ubiquitously,
voyaged whimpering xing yelper zings.

Adoration bequeathed commencing doting
eyeing, fondling, giving heartfelt infusion
joyus kindred living momentous novel
offspring perpetrate quickening rapport

subjected treatment unequivically validates
wonderful Xit yolking bearable delivery
fostering  heavenly joy kneading,
legitimizing, masterminding nascent

ontogenesis pacifying quivering reverentially
terminating viability, where yips align  
crying embryo finis gestating heralding
jubilant loving natural parental reverence.

Reality inundates the full term off
spring upon a lifelong journey (initially as a
foreigner sans in utero), but willfulness viz
life source secures survivor against pinging

peccadilloes learning by trial and error to iron
out kinks as one among the human league
since modus operandi transcend encumbrances
triggers built in impetus to traverse potential

pitfalls along the space/time continuum trajectory
which adversity only serves to net greater strength
since that instantaneous and spontaneous bitmap
encoded upon conception.

— The End —